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by Albert Benjamin (A.B.) Simpson (1843-1919)

Albert Benjamin Simpson was born near Cavendish, Prince Edward Island where his father, among other occupations, worked as a ship builder. Albert became a highly influential believer in the late 19th and early 20th centuries as a pastor, writer, evangelist, and founder of the Christian and Missionary Alliance. As years passed Albert sensed a significant calling from the Lord to a more consecrated walk with Him. He felt less drawn to what he could ‘get’ from the Lord. Rather, he realized the need for a total surrender to the Lord’s will. Albert reckoned this as a much needed death to self and a new, daily commitment to living the ‘crucified life.’ The lyrics to the song Himself (see below) reflects the maturing walk that Albert experienced as he let go of himself and followed Christ more fully. 

Once it was the blessing

Now it is the Lord

Once it was the feeling

Now it is His Word

Once His gift I wanted

Now, the Giver own

Once I sought for healing

Now Himself alone


Once ‘twas painful trying

Now ‘tis perfect trust

Once a half salvation

Now the uttermost

Once ‘twas ceaseless holding

Now He holds me fast

Once ‘twas constant drifting

Now my anchor’s cast


Once ‘twas busy planning

Now ‘tis trustful prayer

Once ‘twas anxious caring

Now He has the care

Once ‘twas what I wanted

Now what Jesus says

Once ‘twas constant asking

Now ‘tis ceaseless praise


Once it was my working

His it hence shall be

Once I tried to use Him

Now He uses me

Once the power I wanted

Now the Mighty One

Once for self I labored

Now for Him alone


Once I hoped in Jesus

Now I know He’s mine

Once my lamps were dying

Now they brightly shine

Once for death I waited

Now His coming hail

And my hopes are anchored

Safe within the veil